Special contributor to Silicon Hills News
Pitch your idea. Pitch some more. Then keep pitching. Do it perhaps hundreds of times.
That’s the only way for entrepreneurs to get their product and technology pitch up to a level that will impress potential investors, according to Cole Wollak. He gave a presentation at Geekdom in San Antonio on Wednesday night.
Cole helped run the most recent Techstars Cloud program held at Geekdom earlier this year. TechStars Cloud had the members of the program repeat their pitches dozens, if not hundreds of times. The results showed.
Here, the CEO of TechStars Cloud program member Keen.io shows that even engineers can pitch:
Why do we care, anyway? Investors care about the idea and technology, right? Well, the initial pitch is the most important interaction an entrepreneur will have with an investor. It’s where a first impression is made. Ultimately, an investor knows that an entrepreneur unable to organize him or herself to present a coherent, persuasive, concise pitch will also be highly unlikely to create a good, profitable business.
Some tips from Cole:
Minimize the use of gimmicks or jokes. One per pitch if at all.
Keep it short and high-level. Notice Techstars pitches are 5-7 minutes in length.
Don’t presume anything about your audience.
Stories are a great way to personalize a talk and get people’s attention.
Resources are available at Geekdom for budding entrepreneurs and technologists honing their pitch.
The new office hours of the staff members are one example. As demonstrated by the discussion amongst the attendees at the talk, the other members of Geekdom can be a great resource as well.
About Michael Girdley: He’s an entrepreneur, budding technology investor, reformed programmer and author, part-time Crossfit instructor and writer living in Southtown San Antonio. He can be reached at Michael@girdley.com and his personal website is Girdley.com.